Why do America's wealthiest earners need tax cuts?

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Answered by: Paul, An Expert in the US Liberal Politics - General Category
The idea that America's wealthiest earners need tax cuts is not only false, it defies the most fundamental concepts of logic.

Of course, even conservatives realize it is nonsensical to propose that the rich need to be richer at the expense of everyone else. To counter the absurdity of that idea, they posit that increasing the affluence of the affluent is necessary for the benefit of everyone else. That is, according to the right-wing argument, the more capital the wealthy have, the more jobs they create.

Recent history has, painfully and tragically, shown this concept to be false as well. The Bush tax cuts began in 2001, to benefit America's wealthiest earners, and contributed to the Great Recession and our growing debt. We recently extended those cuts. The gap between the wealthy and everyone else is wider than it has been in generations. Corporations, their CEOs and others in the wealthy class are sitting on billions. This may help keep the economy growing at a low rate, and keep stock prices relatively high, but it does not create jobs.

In other words, the unemployment problem is not due to the fact that the rich are not rich enough. In fact, as the rich get richer, unemployment continues to get worse. Hence, the idea, cleverly crafted to justify the absurdity that the wealthy need to be wealthier, is itself proven false.

How, then, does this policy continue to exist? Since it is largely only the richest two percent of the population that benefits from it, why aren’t they simply out-voted? It is not as easy to answer these questions as it is to debunk the myths that drive the policy in question. But a large part of the answer lies in that word “myth.”

The destructive policy which makes the rich richer at the expense of society as a whole stands on a system of myths. These myths include, but are not limited to, the idea that well groomed, mostly white males cannot be responsible for any part of society’s ills. And it is, largely, well groomed mostly white males that drive policy, even in this age of ethnic diversity and relative gender equality.

Furthermore, that system of myths also holds that those we perceive as benefiting most from government programs are the ones who cause society’s ills. Those people are less well groomed and less white (They are also less vocal on policy issues, making them even more easy to scapegoat).

A substantial part of the population holds these myths as true, even as gospel. It may not be a majority that desperately clings to and promotes these myths, but it is a group large and vociferous enough to sustain the policy, despite its continued and repeated failure.

One of the reasons the minority rules is apathy, ignorance and indifference on the part of those who would otherwise oppose that minority more forcefully.

Hence, the policy stands. Despite rising public debt and woeful unemployment levels, a nominally democratic society maintains a tax policy that defies even the most basic tenets, not only of logic, but of economics.

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